Review of the economic theories on poverty

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Summary & aims

The aim of this review is to provide an overview of the main economic theories on the causes of and responses to poverty which are relevant to the UK. The analysis critically contrasts the views on poverty of different economic schools of thought such as the classical/neo-classical, neo-liberal/Keynesian and Marxist. It is concerned with both the positive (what is) and normative (what should be) aspects to the problem.


The intermediary milestones necessary to fulfil the objectives set out above are the following:
  1. Collection and selection of academic papers, books and other sources of knowledge on the economic theories of poverty.
  2. Thorough analysis, synthesis and extraction of the main information contained in these sources.
  3. Drafting of the detailed review of each of the main economic perspectives on poverty.
  4. Drafting of the summary of the main points/messages reflected in the "findings" report.
This project was funded by the Joseph Rowntree Foundation and belongs to the overarching "Anti-poverty strategies for the UK" theme . It began in February 2014 and was completed in April 2014. More details about the project are available on the Joseph Rowntree Foundation's website